Thursday, September 10, 2015

Day 4 of the 12-day Giant Irish Adventure

Day 4 starts out with on again, off again showers as we drive off the beaten track into the mountains to go over the scenic Granny Pass to west Donegal. We have crossed the border back into the Republic of Ireland. We changed our Sterling back to Euros in Derry.

Do you see the llamas on the left?
 They have babies.

Into the mountains.
 Notice the black sheep.

 A good example of a well-thatched roof.
Scenes from the road...

Another ancient portal tomb.
 A nice camping spot beside the road.
We are going to have a boat ride along the 2000 ft Slieve League Cliffs if weather permits.  Paddy, the boat captain, has told Dee that the seas are a bit rough, but doable...leaving the decision up to us.
All looks good in the harbor, so we decided to go.
 Of course it depends which direction you are looking.
 Paddy giving the safety talk.
 A small fishing boat is heading out.
There was some spray over the bow,
 And whoo-wha moments... but doable, as Paddy said.
 Sheep were grazing on the sides of the cliffs.
 A waterfall...
 Paddy pulled up by the waterfall and dropped anchor.
 Then he invited us to go for a swim in the cold Atlantic waters. He had wet suits available.
 People mulled it over and a few decided to go. Monica's headed for the cabin to put on a wetsuit. You see how the rest of us are dressed?
 Dee went first!

 There goes Tom...without a wetsuit!
Followed by Elaine and Monica,
 And finally, Lance.
Everyone survived.
Meanwhile there was beautiful scenery to look at. 

 We continued on as far as we could along the cliffs.
There are a series of old signal towers along the coast.
They were built and used during the Napoleonic Wars. 
We passed more waterfalls.
 Amazing forces shaped these cliffs.

 When the going got too rough we turned back.
 After the boat ride we stopped here for refreshments.
On the road again...
We stopped in the seaside town of Bundoran to stretch our legs and have lunch.
 A public park with a promenade and swimming beaches.
 Do you see the pool on the edge of the sea?
 Another angle.
 People enjoying the beach.
 Continuing on, there's more to do today.
 We are going to hike to Queen Maeve's tomb on top of Knocknarea Mountain. Dee says there are amazing views of the Sligo coastline from up there.
 You want to go, don't you?

 There's a bit to read before we go, so we understand what we are seeing...(and doing!) Here's the myth about Queen Maeve:
 The large cairn on top (Queen Maeve's grave) was built around 3400 BC, so it's pretty old. It has never been excavated to find what really lies within.

 The Irish poet, W.B. Yeats wrote about this place.
 Just so you know...
Ready? Let's go!
 Oh wait, Tina says...We could have ridden horses up here?
 Looking far, so good.
 We meet the horses coming down.
 Interpretive signs tell us that there are about 60 passage tombs (from the Neolithic Era...4000 to 2500 BC) located on the peaks seen in the distance, making this one of the most important archaeological landscapes in Ireland. 
 A circa early 1800's village was once located just below this spot. Remains of houses have been found.
 A field of Heather.
 Climbing the mountain.

 Onward! We are Vagabonders!
 Queen Maeve's Tomb comes into view.
 The person on top is not from our group. Signs clearly forbid walking on the cairn.
 The amazing view of the Sligo coastline...once again, Dee is right!

 Starting down.

 We made it!
I love these roads!

 We have arrived at Waterfront Guesthouse in Enniscrone...our night's stay.
 Some have chosen to go here for a relaxing seaweed bath.
 The old bathhouse and beach across the road from the hotel.
 The lovely breakfast buffet. You could also order off the menu for hot items.
 And a rainbow to start the new day....but that's another post.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Due to recent spam in comments, all new comments will be moderated and approved before publishing.